On this day, November 6, 1860, Abraham Lincoln was elected president by a landslide, electoral vote. He was not the popular vote winner. He went on to lead our country at a time when living was slower, easier and we had a congress which hasn’t changed much over the many years since.
Being a rather lanky, unusual looking fellow – wearing a stovepipe hat which added another foot to his height – he was a bit comical to the average man. However his timely stories hit a nerve with the people. They could relate to Lincoln’s desire to save the nation from the Civil War. This young man, with little political experience, seemed the perfect, untarnished, politician fit for the job.
At the same time, another man was gaining material for his future writings, by spending time in Missouri, on the river which would provide fodder for those adventurous tales. He also was a man who related well to the populace. He had a keen sense of humor and had plenty to say about our government and especially the congress. Many of his most popular quotes refer to that.
Here are a few:
- “That’s the difference between governments and individuals. Governments don’t care, individuals do.”
- “Politicians and diapers must be changed often, and for the same reason.”
- “Patriotism is supporting your country all the time, and your government when it deserves it.”
- “Suppose you were an idiot, and suppose you were a member of Congress; but I repeat myself.”
Abraham Lincoln could also turn a phrase. Here are some of his gems:
- “I am a firm believer in the people. If given the truth, they can be depended upon to meet any national crisis. The great point is to bring them the real facts.
- “Ballots are the rightful and peaceful successors to bullets.
- “Don’t interfere with anything in the Constitution. That must be maintained, for it is the only safeguard of our liberties
- .”No man has a good enough memory to be a successful liar
The words of these men bore similar threads. They both lived in a time of a much simpler way. We don’t always think of the treacherous, ominous cloud that hung over our country then. Soon after Lincoln’s inauguration, the Civil War broke out and lasted through most of his time in office. This fellow who loved America and felt responsible for her. He knew that blood would be shed over a way of life that had up until then consumed America – slavery.
Twain had his opinions, but he held our government responsible for inactivity and not doing their jobs. In Lincoln’s time, men would be fired for their lack of getting things done. Instead of holding our elected officials accountable for their laziness, we allow this to continue more than 150 years later. We seem to lack the intelligence to know how to deal with this issue. When employees are not doing what they were elected to do, or are not administering their oath of office, it’s time to send out a lot of pink slips. No employer would stand still for what continues to be the soup du jour of government.
Here’s a quote I’d like to leave you with today. It comes from a book which has been a best seller for centuries and will go on for years to come:
- “My kingdom is not of this world. If my kingdom were of this world, my servants would have been fighting, that I might not be delivered over to the Jews. But my kingdom is not from the world.” Jesus, Christ
God instituted government. He gave us a handbook by which we can lead our lives. He will always deliver those who trust in Him. We must remain vigilant as more and more corruption rears its ugly head, yet we should even pray for those who might cause harm to our country – within our borders or outside of them. We cannot allow our basic tenets to be squashed, nor stand silent as our Constitution is dismembered. These beliefs and have endured for over 200 years and are still pertinent to what is going on right now.